USA Luge Junior National Team seeks funding for more training runs this season

By Sandy Caligiore | Aug. 01, 2018, 9:44 p.m. (ET)

 

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. - The United States cheered loudly for Chris Mazdzer when he won the nation’s first-ever medal, a silver, in men’s singles luge competition at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea in February. His success came through hard work, athleticism, coaching, technology, financial support and countless trips down different luge tracks around the world as a teenager.

Like any other skill, the younger you learn to drive a sled down the hill, the more the mind and body absorb those abilities. Kids like Chris, in their formative luge years, required hundreds of runs down the tracks he races on today as a member of the USA Luge Team.

The United States Olympic Committee has focused its resources on the National Team/Olympic Team level athletes. That support is sincerely appreciated, but it places a financial burden upon USA Luge. Developing future athletes is the sole responsibility of the organization and we need your help.

Donations to the USA Luge Junior National Team: www.teamusa.org/usa-luge/junior-national-team-fundraiser

Robert Fegg, a former German National Team athlete and Junior World Champion, was hired by USA Luge in the spring to lead the Junior National Team, focused on kids 15-19 years of age. His record of building a strong program speaks for itself: he was an integral part of the successes of Canada, and most recently, the Korean Olympic team.

The Junior National Team will represent our nation this season at a series of six Junior World Cup events in Europe and North America. In addition, the athletes will race at the Junior World Championships, the biggest event of the season for the youngsters. Without exception, every Olympian since 1992 has been a member of the Junior National Team.

As the Junior National Team coach, Fegg’s first priority is more runs down the hill.

‘I’ve looked through the budget and determined that the athletes will require 350-400 runs this season, as opposed to the 200-250 the team has taken in the past few years,” stated Fegg.

While this is true, the increase in training time comes at a cost.

“This is where USA Luge is asking American sports fans and supporters to help the organization raise $50,000 to get the team on the road for an added month of training in the 2018-19 season,” said Gordy Sheer, the team’s Director of Marketing and Sponsorships. “We aim to hit our goal by August 31, 2018.”

When you support the Junior National Team, you’ll not only help the USA increase its chances of winning Olympic medals in the future, but you’ll also help enrich the lives of the athletes who learn so much as they travel internationally.

As a bonus, any donation over $10,000 will receive a National Team jacket and a trip for two to the USA Luge Fantasy Camp in Lake Placid next April.

Supporters who donate $100-$250 will be sent a USA Luge t-shirt(s); one shirt for $100, two for $250. Donations of $1,000 to $5,000 will receive an official team winter jacket; one for $1,000, two for $2,500 and up.

Donations of $5,000 will receive a trip to the USA Luge Fantasy Camp.

Finally, for every donation between $100 and $200, a generous friend of USA Luge will add to the contribution in a unique manner. For instance, if you give $101, our anonymous donor will give $1. If you give $102, our donor will give $2. But if you donate $200, our donor will give $100. Our friend will continue to give $100 for all donations above $200.

“We’d like to do nothing better than drain this kind and generous person’s piggybank,” concluded Sheer.